Objective A review was performed to investigate the frequency of occurrence and outcome of patients who have retained surgical sponges.
Methods Closed case records from the files of the Medical Professional Mutual Insurance Company (ProMutual, Boston, MA) involving a claim of retained surgical sponges were reviewed for a 7-year period.
Results Retained sponges occurred in 40 patients, comprising 48% of all closed claims for retained foreign bodies.
A falsely correct sponge count after an abdominal procedure was documented in 76% of these claims.
Ten percent of claims involved vaginal deliveries and minor non-body cavity procedures, for which no sponge count was performed.
Total indemnity payments were $2,072,319, and defense costs were $572,079.
In three cases, the surgeon was deemed responsible by the court despite the nursing staff's admitting liability and evidence presented that the surgeon complied completely with the standard of care.
A wide range of indemnity payments was made despite a remarkable similarity of outcome in the patients studied.
Conclusions Despite the rarity of the reporting of a retained surgical sponge, this occurrence appears to be encountered more commonly than generally is appreciated.
Operating teams should ensure that sponges be counted for all vaginal and any incisional procedures at risk for retaining a sponge. (...)
Mots-clés Pascal : Chirurgie, Complication, Iatrogène, Corps étranger, Eponge, Incidence, Symptomatologie, Indemnité dédommagement, Etude statistique, Homme, Abdomen pathologie, Appareil génital femelle pathologie
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Surgery, Complication, Iatrogenic, Foreign body, Sponge, Incidence, Symptomatology, Indemnity, Statistical study, Human, Abdominal disease, Female genital diseases
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 96-0357004
Code Inist : 002B25G04. Création : 10/04/1997.